Lentil Vegan Chili

This is a delicious vegan chili recipe that even hardcore meat eaters will love! It’s the perfect make ahead meal, making it great for busy weeknights or slow, leisurely weekends!

vegan chili

When we decided to switch to a plant based lifestyle, one thing I was going to miss was my mom’s homemade chili.

I knew I had to find a way to make a vegan chili without loosing the incredibly delicious flavor of my mom’s aware winning chili recipe.

vegan chili

The problem is that I am not a huge fan of the plant based ground meats. Yet, I wanted to keep the texture close to the original. Choosing lentils to replace the ground beef in her original recipe was a no-brainer.

Benefits of Lentils

  • Inexpensive
  • High in fibre
  • Rich in B vitamins, magnesium, zinc, and potassium
  • A good plant-based source of protein
  • low in fat

Given they are a nutritious option, and they easily take on the the flavours of the spices, made them the perfect choice for this vegan chili recipe!

Vegan Chili

I think my favorite thing about my mom’s chili recipe is that it has a mildly spicy flavor. I am not one for hot spicy flavors.

Great Make ahead meal option

Another thing I love about chili, is that it tastes even better the second day or it can be frozen. I often make a double batch for a weekend meal, and freeze half for one of those nights when time is at a premium.

It can be stored in the refrigerator up to 5 days or frozen in an air tight container (I use Ziploc freezer bags) and frozen for up to 3 months.

Cold weather comfort food at it’s finest!

Vegan Chili

Other vegan/vegetarian recipes you might enjoy

Vegan Chocolate Cake

Easy One Pot Vegetable Noodle Soup

Vegan Bakery Style Banana Muffins

Vegan Chili

Vegan Chili

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 4 seconds
Total Time: 20 minutes 4 seconds

A delicious vegan chili recipe any meat eater would love!


  • 6 or 7 small onions, chopped
  • 2 stocks celery, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 28 ounce cans diced tomatoes
  • 2 14 ounce cans red kidney beans (not drained)
  • 2 1/2 cups prepared lentils (see notes below)
  • 2 small cans tomato paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon dried mustard
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • salt to taste
  • Vegan cheese shreds (optional)


  1. In a large stock pot over med-high heat, heat oil, add onions and celery until softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add all remaining ingredients and simmer over low heat for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, stirring often.


1 cup dried lentils yields about 2 1/2 cups cooked. Simply add 4 cups water to a saucepan with the lentils, bring to boil and reduce to simmer for 40 minutes. Drain.

Or you can use prepared canned lentils!

Lentil Vegan Chili

Until next time…..

Red Cottage Chronicles

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  1. I’m soooooo going to give this a try Maureen. My daughter has gone vegan and it’s a struggle in a household full of meat lovers to find recipes we’ll all enjoy. Your lentil chilli sounds like the perfect compromise/plan

  2. I’m a meat eater but when it comes to chili, I love lots of beans but family prefer more meat. This looks like a great recipe to try but might have to sneak some meat in for the guys.

  3. Delicious, Maureen!!! I do eat meat but I love a good vegan dish, too. Looking forward to making this chili recipe this winter. <3 The pecan tower looks wonderful, too, even with the contest being over.

    Happy fall to you,
    Barb 🙂